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Hopes rise for Iran nuclear deal, Geneva talks enter third day

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Hopes rise for Iran nuclear deal, Geneva talks enter third day
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Russia’s Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov arrived in Geneva late on Friday to join international talks on Iran’s nuclear programme – as speculation swirled that a deal to resolve the dispute between Tehran and the West could be close.

Iran’s Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif said he believed an agreement could be reached during the talks in Geneva, which began on Thursday and have been extended to include an unscheduled third day on Saturday.

US officials stressed on Friday that progress was being made. But Secretary of State John Kerry, who interrupted his tour of the Middle East and North Africa to join the negotiations, said earlier in the talks that there were still ‘important gaps’ between the two sides.

The deal on the table could see Iran freeze expansion of its nuclear activity in exchange for the lifting of some international sanctions.

Euronews’ Fariba Mavaddat reported from Geneva: “Despite the warnings that there are still major obstacles to overcome, some very high-profile diaries have been seriously re-organised over the last 24-hours. The prospect of an historic deal has very quickly turned these talks into a top-level foreign ministers’ summit.”